The Season 4 finale of NBC's "Parks and Recreation," "Win, Lose or Draw," delivered on producer Michael Schur's promises in "Entertainment Weekly" to resolve all story lines and, essentially, offer something for everyone.
The most hotly awaited news, of course, was the outcome of the election. Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler), the head of the Pawnee Parks and Recreation Department, had been running a season-long campaign for city council seat to fulfill her dream of being elected to public office. The race had been razor-thin between her and Bobby Newport (Paul Rudd), a well-liked dimwit cashing in on his family association to the town's biggest employer.
Initial results showed Bobby with a slight lead over Leslie: 21 votes. But Leslie's campaign manager and boyfriend, Ben Wyatt (Adam Scott) demanded a recount, which reversed the decision in her favor. Leslie's dream was realized, and there was something satisfying about watching the woman who famously portrayed Hillary Clinton on "Saturday Night Live" reading a victory speech.
Rather than leaving things tied into a neat bow, the writers threw a complication into the works for Leslie and Ben. Newport's campaign manager, Jennifer Barkley (Kathryn Hahn) was so impressed with his work running Leslie's campaign that she offered him a job in Washington. After an internal debate and some initial reluctance from Leslie, Ben accepted the job offer with Leslie's blessing. As Schur promised in the "EW" teaser article, it's not a typical sitcom relationship complication, but that's what makes it so intriguing. Watching the two of them engaged in political intrigue (in both small-town and national forums) offers plenty of opportunities to introduce new characters and situations.
There's not much anxiety at this point over the future of their relationship: after all, they've already weathered much more. The two of them had to break up in the early part of Leslie's campaign because he was still a county employee, and dating co-workers was against city regulations. Eventually, in the midst of an ethics investigation, he resigned his position in order to save her job and her political career.
Other story lines also received satisfactory resolutions that opened up intriguing new directions. Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman) finally rejected an offer from city manager Chris Traeger (Rob Lowe) to become the assistant city manager, accepting the fact that he really doesn't like change. This, of course, opens the way for Swanson to take over the Parks and Rec department, which will no doubt deliver plenty of humorous situations as he tries to avoid the responsibilities, in keeping with his "small government" philosophy.
This season's on-again, off-again romance between Ann Perkins (Rashida Jones) and Tom Haverford (Aziz Ansari) resolved with Ann drunkenly agreeing to move in with him. A decision bursting with comic possibilities, as their personalities are so drastically different. And a subplot featuring April Ludgate (Aubrey Plaza) and husband Andy Dwyer (Chris Pratt) ended with April suggesting he pursue his dream job as a police officer. Given the previous week's entertaining subplot, where Andy served as a detective to track down a rogue pie thrower, this also promises comic possibilities.
Fans left the finale not only satisfied but wanting more, and that's definitely what Schur wanted.
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